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Accenture, Deloitte Name Crowdsourcing as a Key Trend for 2014
© Image: Shutterstock / kentoh

Accenture, Deloitte Name Crowdsourcing as a Key Trend for 2014

Crowdsourcing, as our regular readers know, spans a number of industries. From Doritos Super Bowl ads created by the crowd to crowdfunding platforms, large groups of people connected by the internet have created a new way for businesses to solve problems.

- eYeka’s Francois Petavy: Five Predictions for Crowdsourcing in 2014
- Kickstarter and the Three Rules of the Long Tail

Identifying crowdsourcing as a key trend for 2014 in two separate reports, the consulting firms Accenture and Deloitte (which also create the graphic to the right) recently tied together the different ways crowdsourcing can help businesses ideate, market-test products, and find innovative solutions to old dilemmas. 

While the reports offered different examples to support their arguments, the two reports are strikingly similar in substance, focusing on the benefits of crowdsourcing and spelling out how its different forms can help an enterprise.

Perhaps the most important point the reports make is that crowdsourcing is starting to permeate large enterprises and governments. Indeed, that’s likely the biggest reason both consulting firms felt that they needed to include the trend in their reports. No longer just a solution for small businesses and independent projects, crowdsourced solutions are beginning to become a more common sight at Fortune 1000 firms.

The reports also stress the crowd’s role in helping companies identify market demands. This can be done through crowdfunding, by seeing which perks the crowd responds to and at what price points, as well as through crowdsourced ideation contests, like Walmart’s ‘Get on the Shelf’ competition.

Additionally, the reports discuss how cloud labor platforms like oDesk and Amazon Mechanical Turk are able to help enterprises complete simple, labor-intensive jobs. Both conclude by charting out the next steps for a C-level executive who is interested in charting a crowdsourcing agenda for his or her enterprise.

While it’s hardly surprising, given the consulting firms’ clientele and the target audience of these reports, both Deloitte and Accenture are quiet on how crowdsourcing may alter the job marketplace. While they discuss the different ways to engage a crowd of workers, and what motivates them to participate, they don’t address typical wages and potential regulatory hurdles (though these don’t apply to all types of crowdsourcing — crowdfunding, for example).

Still, the reports are both fairly comprehensive and do a great job of outlining the benefits of working with the crowd, making for some interesting weekend reading.

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